tv The Dylan Ratigan Show MSNBC January 4, 2011 4:00pm-5:00pm EST
plus, reports of a deal to settle foreclosure lawsuits against the nation's biggest lenders. will it lead to reform and will it do anything for peek facing evasion? plus, zen dollars. their currency selling like hot cakes. a hundred trillion dollar bill there. now, the hottest take-home trinket for tourists in the african nation. show starts right now. in washington this afternoon, it's like the night before the first day of high school as a freshman. 94 of them in congress. the biggest freshman class in 60 years, all wondering will anyone like me? the big bad republicans ready to storm the halls. house democrats getting ready to face their new bullies from the
majority party and the principal, president obama, hoping to keep everybody in line. but the rest of us, of course, hoping that everyone in washington learned any kind of a lesson over the holiday break when they left the beltway and saw firsthand the crisis facing this country. you know the list, i won't get into it, but here's a sample. one in ten out of work. really one in five if you look at the underemployed. nearly triple that number who have given up. the housing market, over 5.5 million homes worth more money, excuse me, less money that the mortgage on the home. facing foreclosure or already evicted, often through no fault of their own, but through the structural unemployment that plagues this country. all the while, the government continues to operate under the big banks and also the health care monopolies and their crushing costs, now, just being subsidize wd the government's
credit card. it's good for somebody. kind of like the first day of high school, the halls of congress will look a lot different tomorrow. but the question is, will anyone move to the head of the class and stand up for america as opposed to themselves or what they believe is some small group of interests they want to be part of. joining us now, tom coburn. one of the more outspoken critics on the ultimate dysfunction in american government. good to have you. let's start at the top of the list. there's talk about health care repeal. you have a unique perspective. do you see this as anything more than political theatre? >> i think it's a healthy -- i don't think it's going to go anywhere because the president is going to veto anything out of the congress. the real fact of the matter is
we didn't solve any problems and just expanded coverage without controlling the understolying disease process. i think having the debate brings it back to the american people in that we need to address the real disease, not the symptoms and as long as we don't have market forces working in health care, we're not going to control the cost. >> you think we'll be able to emphasize that point by resurrecting this debate? >> we need to. if you take phil bred sen, the tennessee governor, we're going to expand health care, but create a new entitlement. >> which brings me to my second topic, the national debt. whether it's the perpetuation of monopoly based health care that costs a fortune, we know that story, all is being paid for by
borrowed money or money precipitationing. where do you see we are headed when it comes to the actual debt deba debate. >> the realizization we're spending $4 billion a day we don't have and the impact it's going to have on our future, we're not going to be able to protect the middle class if we keep spending money on things we don't need and washington failed to address the massive waste and fraud in the federal government. and it shouldn't be about party. it should be about -- if you're 13 years old, your feature's trashed if we don't start making common sense reforms. >> one of the greatest barriers to any sort of common sense solutions has been the inability to sort of harvest or create an environment of reconciliation
between intelligent, interested parties who may have different philosophical points of view. reminds me of a conversation i had with a plofs professor in philadelphia talking about that debay. i want you to take a listen. >> i am often deeply depressed by not just the partisan difference, but by the ranker and failure to find conciliation. >> how do you get to a place where you can actually conduct problem solving? >> well, two, one is the problem that people are pursuing. in fact, their own positions and careers. that's one of the things that's really hurt our country. is that people looked forward to doing things to aid the next election rather than fix the real problems of the country.
i think there are some serious minds up here that recognize the problem of the debt we're in. and i think that we can solve it. no matter which end of the political spectrum you're on, we're not going to be able to do anything for anybody if nobody wants to loan us money and the interest costs on our debt go to a third or fourth of everything we spend every year. we've had some good conversations a across the aisle before we went home. i think there's a large bipartisan majority in the senate that wants to address the problems, but you have to define what the real problem is. the debt is unsustainable. where we are today is not sustainable. we cannot continue what we're doing. so, the question comes as what is the true role for the government? can we eliminate all the duplications, the waste, and still get our house in order? we can't do that unless we have real tax reform and create an
environment where we can see a productive america with a growing middle class. >> isn't the challenge in that that in order to achieve a lot of what you're describing would require a diminishment of power in washington, d.c.? >> absolutely. why do you think we're in the trouble we're in? we have the power, but not the responsibility or common sense with which to direct that power, so consequently, we put out the fiat all time that has terrible downsides. >> if you were to look at solving a problem where i'm looking to the individuals who will lose if you will, being the political class in order to solve a problem being created by the relationship between the american people and its political class, are we, am i in fantasy land to look to people, there aren't a lot of tom coburns.
>> i think what you have to do is look at what the oath is when all these new 94 members come in in this new congress. do they stand with their oath to up hold the constitution and it's true meaning or do they work on a political career? and you can do -- you can't do both. you either going to work to solve the problems in front of this county tr. hopefully, that's why the majority of them came, but will they transition from that noble cause and effort to one of protecting myself to make sure i get re-elected? we need a bunch of people who don't care if they get re-elected, but care enough about the country to make the hard choices. >> you referenced the constitution as a leader in the senate. how would you advise others who who can to the constitution be used as a document? should it be used as a literal guide or should the aspirations
of distributed power and freedom in that document be used? >> i think you can use one great example. look at the commerce clause and what our founders said about it and look what we've done to trash it. then look at why we're in the trouble we're in. we've had this expansive role that the federal government can go anywhere it wants to under the basis we're affecting commerce. we're outside, ever any intent that the federal goal, federal government would be restrained in its level of government and that we would empower the states and recognize truly what was intended with the tenth amendment and you have that pat l of whether it's legislation or regulations. the conflict is causing haling with the state debt.
think about the health care. we're going to add 16 million people to medicaid? it's going to bankrupt every state. we've done it and you must. so what's going to happen is we're going to steal money from education to put people in a substandard program and call it health care. i'm not picking on the health care, that's just one example. we do it every day. we ought to be about reading bills. making sure we solve the problem. we caugought to call anybody ou where fr a policy base that's good for the country in the long-term. whether republican or democrat. we don't have a lot of time, i believe. i think it's very urgent we address our needs in a way that sends a signal, that we're going to start living within our means and figure out a way to balance our budget and bring down the level of gdp and the result of
that will be the growing prosperity for everybody across this country. >> from your mouth to the halls of the chamber and chambers that you and your colleagues inhabit, it is a pleasure to see you. the last time i saw you on vacation, i grew one myself. when i came back to work, i told the staff they could decide whether i would keep this madness. the full grizzly, then i went with the handlebar. what do you think about the handlebar? >> i think it's fine. you ever invented shaving, curse beyond their house. still ahead, how our problems in afghanistan may soon be dwafed by the trouble in pakistan. why the real issue and impending problem for not only our
country, but the world coming out of that region indeed may be finally centering up for our leaders on pakistan. a tool where people can enter the terms of the refinance offer they got from their mortgage guy, and know instantly if they're getting bamboozled. and i will start after lunch...tomorrow. don't just think about it. introducing lendingtree's free "look before you lock" tool. enter the terms of your existing loan offer to instantly find out how it compares to other offers, areas you may be overpaying, and even negotiation points to help you get a better deal. only at lendingtree. [ both screaming ] i got into one of the most expensive schools in the country! [ male announcer ] when stress gives you heartburn with headache... alka-seltzer gives you relief fast. [ low male ] plop, plop. [ high male ] fizz, fizz. to finish what you started today. for the aches and sleeplessness in between, there's motrin pm.
iraq war now referred to as sunni awakening, but a different view in other part of the country as a u.s. commander tells the media the war is -- i want to bring in tony shaffer, from the center for advanced defense studies, author of "operation dark heart." can both assessments be true at the same time? >> absolutely. i think that's one of the keys of the whole situation. you have progress in some locations and dylan, frankly, one of the recommendations maybe someone read by book for a change. one of the recommendations, we have to understand a culture and go back to how we won in 2001, 2002, which is by dealing with
the tribes directory. we didn't win in afghanistan in 2001 and 2002. the folks there won it with us. this is key, i think, to not compare this to the sunni awakening, which is valid. this is going back to the roots of how we won. what hurt us was the fact we decided to start focusing on a central government and breaking a lot of the agreements and promises we had made to begin with. >> what people probably don't realize is that afghanistan was not and has not been a country with a central government, so in addition to fight a war or make a peace, which was tribal sort of regionalism, we decided to do a major systematic overhaul. icht shift to pakistan. >> this individual was
considered a liberal. he supported the fact a christian woman should not be put to death and the reason when he was assassinated because of the blasphemy law. any mad mouthing of the muslim faith can be dealt with. this governor of the most poufrful province was assassinated by one f his own bodyguards which talks to the essence of how unstable that country is. you have a very active minority. the radicals that killed benazir bhutto and here, it's another indication it's these radical elements. >> if you were to go beyond the fact that pakistan has nuclear weapons, which a lot of people understand pakistan, we have to
worry about because they have nukes, but beyond that, why is pakistan such a concerned to us? >> well, there's really, i believe, two additional reasons to the nukes. obviously, nuke is the most obvious and most significant. other than that, they have a great regional role. they are clearly a leader in a number of ongoing issues through the the region. they have been for better or worse, or gateway into afghanistan and keeping that country somewhat focused and when we stepped away from afghanistan, we stepped away from pakistan. so, i think we're obligated to try to continue to work with the pakistanis in some form. they've done a number of things with the united nations. i talked with one of your staff about the fact that if you watch the movie black hawk down, the pakistanis come to our aid. we have had a strong role with them. in addition, there's a large minority in the united states.
there's a number of folks who live here and work here and support the pakistanis. frankly, if they do well, if the country becomes more stable, they will do well as original democracy. i believe they would do very well in that. >> what is the nature of the relationship between pakistan and pakistan's hospitalalty and remember ls -- in other words, is pakistan manipulating us in some way to stay in afghanistan to the extent to which they can because it's in pakistan's interest for us to be there? >> i believe they are strongly concerned about us pulling out again. for some reason, we won in afghanistan and started pulling out and found bin laden, they're afraid we would do like we did in the late '80s, early '90s,
and just leave. they get a lot of money from us. not saying that's bad, they depend on it. with that said then, they use the taliban for their own services to make sure that they do not have a stable afghanistan, which would support the indians, their cold war, their little cold war adversary. therefore, they're acting in their best interest. like a teenager would do to obtain their initiative to do what's in their best interest. that's what i've talked about before. they are a part time ally. they will only go as far as they can to help us as long as it does not conflict in great detail their self-interest. to include making sure the indians don't get a foothold in afghanistan. >> that's in pakistan's self-interest whether we like it or not.
thank you -- >> i had to get rid of my goatee this morning, too. >> the man continues. look at that. i could be here with a handlebar right now, but no. have a good day. up next, inflation vacations. how tourists are scrambling to take home hundred trillion dollar bills. 100 trillion dollar bills. back from their vacations to africa. why the sudden novelty of such denominations? you probably have an answer. we're back after this. ♪ something wrong with your squeegee, kid? uh, i'm a little sick. sick?! you gonna let a sore throat beat you? you're fearless! this building is tough, but it's never seen the likes of you before. are you going to be a champ or a chump? a champ! show me! ahhhhhhhhh! atta boy! ahhhhhhhhh! [ male announcer ] halls. a pep talk in every drop.
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aren't absorbed properly unless taken with food. he recommended citracal. it's different -- it's calcium citrate, so it can be absorbed with or without food. also available in small, easy-to-swallow petites. citracal. inflation vacations. we're breaking down a token from a troubled economy that has become one of the hottest souvenirs out of africa.
western tourists are now snapping up with hundred trillion dollar bill. this is an economic souvenir from the years that country's skyrocketing inflation and money printed in order to get out of their out of control debt and spe spending. sound familiar? their particular bill, the one hundred followed by 12 zeros. a couple of years ago, the hundred trillion dollar bill bought you a couple of groceries, now that zimbabwe has the american dollar, they're in demand on various curiosities. the worthless bills are now going for $20 or more. i got my hands on a smaller note, a hundred billion dollar note. i thought i was doing pretty good until i just found out about this existence of the
hundred trillion. to hear senator coburn and watch the policies of our own country, your own u.s. dollars, at least the green ones, could become their own. this is possible. still ahead, on the dr show, are the big lenders getting away with fraud closure crimes and is anything in this country powerful enough to stop the giant banks who fund our politicians, serve as the largest real estate holding companies in the world and control almost all of the houses in america? we'll talk to ohio's attorney general, plus, save the date. republicans setting a date for their vote to repeal obama care. we'll talk about it with our e team and see whether senator coburn's point that the costs that remain unaddressed may be addressed in this debate.
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twitter, this one, a riddle of sorts -- very clever. very clever. if you've got something to share, logon and tweet us your thoughts. find me at dylan ratigan. i was just informed that the twitter handle that is tom coburn's beard is my most recent fallow follower. couldn't be more honored. new developments in the fight against fraudclosure. settlements now in the works. all 50 attorneys general
negotiating deals. did i tell you, we bailed out gm because they were running financing scams? that's off topic, but just reminded me. this in response of course to the massive probe of foreclosure practices launched in october. jpmorg jpmorgan, gm, all temporarily freezing foreclosures after admitting questionable foreclosure practices. those banks since resuming foreclosures. all receiving massive sub ssidi from you to me. the key question now is will these settlements bring the reform we all know is so desperately needed and what about the people wrongly kicked out of their homes already even as the banks have no capacity?
final tally not yet in, but 2010 on pace for a record number of foreclosures. joining us now is richard cordray. he'll soon be headed to washington to take a new job and one of the most aggressive in trying to address the fairness, how consequential is this settlement? >> first of all, there isn't a settlement. there are lots of talks and discussions going on and there will not be a settlement unless we are agreed that it is bringing meaningful change to the foreclosure problem and loan modification process that we want to see advanced more effectively. >> today, eve smith at naked capitalism said the petition with 12,000 signatures on it to tim geithner, ben bernanke, mary schapiro and others in
washington asking for tougher regulation. how relevant are efforts like this, where people, they know what's going on and that the federal government is enabling it. how relevant. >> i think people in washington, people in columbus, ohio, need to hear from people about their real life situations. but their stories are so rampant now about the problems with the mortgage servicers, that we're at the end of our patient ens and we want to see meaningful reform and the scandal has created significant exposure, so it gives us an opportunity to see if we can make the kind of change that we want to see that will help homeowners and our economy.
>> what would that look like? >> like a mortgage process that is more practical. a conversation that leads to paperwork being submitted and processed properly, so the burden isn't on the homeowner to chase and chase and get a conversation going, then find that the customer service is lacking on the other end of the phone. these are things basic in many industries, but the big mortgage servicers in the last decade have not got thon that point. this is an opportunity for us to see if we can get something done that moves the ball and helps people in this country. >> you and i and most people in this country know that the primary concern -- deprive other
citizens of the country of their freedom of their -- who own or basically giant real estate holding companies and while the politicians well tell us that every american owns a home, the whole truth of the matter is -- control of the houses, already servicing banks. how do we reform this process without in some way reforming the consolidation of power at wells fargo, jpmorgan, citigroup, bank of america? >> i think the row bow signing scandal poses a good test.
there is an ongoing investigation by a number of people at the federal level in all 50 states attorneys general. we are going to try to call them to account and try to get these processes changed so that the flaws are going forward and sweeping existing flaws under the rug. there has to be change in their processes. meaningful compensation for people who have been harmed by the problems and the financial institutions i think recognize here they have created a major problem for themselves. a resolution is in the best interest of everyone, but it's a matter of convincing them of that and that's what we're trying to do. >> it's not in their best
interest. as you go to d.c., how should we evaluate your effectiveness in your new role? >> i'm not there yet. i'm not authorized to speak to the bureau, but i would say the way you should register is are they making a difference for the individuals who are grappling with financial products that have often run amuck, have not served their interest and in many cases, the banks own interests once you begin to assess the damage done. i think it is in the bank's best interest, otherwise, they face individual exposure, subject to the whims of tens of thousands of judges. i think they recognize the expotion, they created the
problem for themselves, now, it's time for us to get it cleaned up. >> a real pleasure to get some time with you. thank you for it. meanwhile, the chicago political machine, another washington power player. that and more with our e team after the break. seven years ago, i had this idea. to make baby food the way moms would. happybaby strives to make the best organic baby food. in a business like ours, personal connections are so important.
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nice to see you. time to convene the first e team of the new year. just like the a-team, but way better. they're here to help us break down the big political stories. from the left, karen finney, the right, susan del percio. welcome. and of course, our insider and resident lobbiest, jimmy williams. let's start here with health care first. again, we heard from senator coburn, his views on the potential gop health care repeal debate. here's nancy pelosi. >> house democrats will continue to protect the gains we had made on behalf of health and economic security for the american people. both in terms of the health care reform bill and the wall street reform bill, both of which gives leverage to america's working family. >> senator coburn, nancy pelosi, when you look at this debate as
it comes back up, susan, will we see a thorough debate of the fact it didn't involve the cost problem? >> i think what you see especially with those two folks is that senator coburn was actually sincere in what he believed. where as nancy pelosi frankly was trying to make it a political argument. n now, when you look at where it's really going to go at the end of the day, they're going to have the vote, get the pr for it and then move off of it. it is a little bit self-serving. >> you want to take away, if you're 26-year-old child is on your health insurance, this bill is saying, i want to repeal that. 143 billion over ten years saved
by this health care bill, that's $143 billion. under the new rule, they don't have to account for okay, where do woe come up with the $143 dll. >>. >> six out of ten years. >> the goal there is not -- >> right. but if the issue, jimmy, is that health care in america is very expensive. an employer-based health care system. largely, a monopoly structure. actually the only business in america other than baseball that has the any trust exception from congress. why, i don't know. we sit here, i don't care how you want to get it done, single payer, open exchange, whatever your solution is, how is it that we can sit here talking about debt ceilings, the deficit, oh, my goodness, the money printing. we're enabling this really
expensive system while expanding its utilization. >> this bill was paid for. it's revenue neutral. short-term -- bill was paid for. second, you repeal the bill and then go in, the whole mantra was repeal and replace. now, it's going to repeal in the house. they can't get it done in the senate. then they're going to replace it, right in that means they're going to add thingss like keeping kids on until their 26. can't get kicked off if you get cancer. >> that's just a bunch of rule making. >> this comes back to the cost issue. let's say they do that and replace it with those things. you now have 30-second ads that are going to be run and that's good for the districts. here's why it's bad for the republicans. they have to come up with these ideas that they're going to
repeal and replace. how are they going to pay for them? they cost money. >> i bet if they replaced it by repealing the monopoly except n exception -- >> this class was lek elected to do things. what i think the american public wants to see is what are you going to do? what are you going to change? they should have come in to be serious and tweaked it. that's where i think the republicans are missing. >> you could think about these things too much. you can get yourself irritated. speaking of irritated. william daley, former jpmorgan chase executive, one of the big advocates of free trade going back to the clinton years maybe
coming in. as chief of staff. >> he's be a great choice. >> why? >> he gets washington, he's from chicago. being from chicago doesn't mean you're a terrible human being. >> thank you. >> honestly, i know a lot of people working at the white house and federal government that are from chicago. >> you can't get into their ivory tower, i mean the white house. >> if i had to choose between chicago and waco, where ever bush is from, i'm choosing chicago. >> there are other locations. >> bill daley would make an excellent chief of staff. he was a great secretary of commerce. would be a great chief of staff. i like the current chief of staff. he runs that place like a rock. i like him. >> it's a very smart strategy for the white house to have floated this name out there to
see what the reaction would be, which is what i think they're doing. also, bill daley has a great reputation. people loved working for him. he understands the policy implications of things that get done in washington at the local level. >> but he doesn't offer a different point of view and that's the problem. that this president has been working in a bubble for two years. he has to hear from other people, not just a bunch of people from chicago. >> i'd love to see a republican female business executive come in and be the chief of staff. a moderate, by the way, come in and be the chief of staff. i hear carly fiorina. oh, wait, she's conservative now. listen, get somebody in that understands business, the obama administration, as much as i love them -- i'm out out of the closet about loving the obama administration. they need to be more pro business. i think that would be a smart move on their part. >> okay.
it's fun, actually. i don't have anything to argue about this. i do however want to talk about darrell issa. isn't it fun to talk about darrell issa? i look at him on the one hand, i think, man, thank god finally somebody's going to do some investigatio investigations. and then on the other hand, i think to myself, hang on a second, are these really going to be investigations that reveal information and solve problems or is the investigative gavel being used once again as a political problem like the republican repeal of the health care bill. >> in this case, you have only six months for anyone to get anything done in washington because they're you're in the political season again. so, it depends on what he does and opens up in the process. was it smart to send a bunch of letters so lobbiests?
not the best. >> wait a minute. >> and looking into fannie and freddie -- >> i agree, that's good thing. the problem, darrell issa has been dreaming about doing this since the republicans won back the house. >> i would be, too. we know that's not necessarily, his agenda is not about getting to the truth, it is clearly, he said he wants to have -- >> do you know that? >> i think it's clear from the things he said and the positions. the letter he said, i have to tell you, having been through this on the clinton administration, i have stacks of boxes of subpoenas from dick
army and from the house side about the -- go off the tracks. >> two or three week to see what he does. >> let's give him the benefit of the doubt. >> he earned it. republicans earned it. they've got to kick it out of the park or fumble. you know who's going to be holding the football? darrell issa is the guy that when you break into the car, this is his voice. >> how about hoping for an administration that's invested in creating jobs for america. >> the other danger here is that what's going to happen the people who spend so much time having done this, responding to the subpoenas, they don't have time to do their job. >> republican leadership is
already -- >> it's fun, it's a tv show. yelling. >> you hearing voices? >> i am. thank you very much for tolerating not only me, but j jimmy. coming up on "hardball," chris matthews talks to elijah cummings, the man who could be all that stands between darrell issa and a title wave of investigations and next here, the "daily rant." sure, we're drowning in debt, but could deep cuts only make it worse? learning from history. charlie whose morning flight to london starts with arthritis pain... and a choice. take tylenol now, and maybe up to 8 in a day. or...choose aleve and 2 pills for a day free of pain. enjoy the flight. but now, to get it really cooking, you need a little website development.
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lots of talk about the need for austerity, cutting. in his first ever "daily rant," mark warns us that deep cuts can be more dangerous than you might recognize. the mike is yours. >> austerity. that's the big word that's supposed to define 2011. austerity is defined by the oxford dictionary as -- but everyone seems to prefer the merriam webster's definition. i guess because it sounds so impersonal. the incoming republican congress is promising to deliver a megadose of austerity this year and the leads are telling us we
need a major dose for our own good. whether we like it or not. but what none of the dictionaries or politicians or experts tell us is that austerity's been -- many times, which might make you think, it's been tried, it works. that's where things get trickty. one of the most infamous programs was tried out -- who was sure that the answer to germany's economic problems was to balance the budget and strengthen the currency by slashing unemployment benefits, pensions and wages. unemployment exploded. riots in the streets. the collapse of democracy and the rise of adolf hitler. the rest is history. but at least he got that deficit under control.
i saw how austerity works in russia in the 1990 dss when a bunch of a bunch of harvard loans -- in exchange for loans. by the end of the 1990s, the russian economy had totally collapsed. the population shrank by millions and democracy was replaced by vladimir putin. so now, there are two ways to look at this austerity. one way is it's completely insane and you've got to be fricking kiddi ingkidding. that's one way. another way is to look at it from the eyes of the establishment. who clearly must know what they're doing. in the worst crash in nearly a century. in other words, these guys